No matter how you look at it, the 2012 BMW X5 xDrive 35i Premium SUV is leading the pack within the luxury Sports Utility Vehicle segment while continuing to prove its value even though there were just a few updates for this model year. It remains with striking styling, plenty of power and a magnificent luxurious interior. The upgrades and enhancements were more complimentary with some previous optional features found in the 2011 model becoming standard features for 2012’s X5 series.
This is by far the Bayerische Motoren Werke AG, or in English, Bavarian Motor Works’ best-selling SUV. BMW has always had a very tight and loyal community following. They’re one of the few automakers that support driving their cars to their limits, suggesting “spirited driving” in certain operation manuals.
The X5 was introduced in 1999 and designed to put the “sport” in sport-utility vehicle, but now BMW is calling it their Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV). This X5 model was the second model to be built at the company’s South Carolina assembly plant where it still is made today.
Its forerunner carved the way for a brand-new type of vehicle and indeed the new X5 raises the SAV driving experience to an even higher standard. Both the 8 and 6 cylinder engines are very powerful and smooth, its unique suspension is impressive, the enhanced BMW xDrive all-wheel-drive technology is flawless, as well as a weight-optimized bodyshell with extreme torsional stiffness all interact to ensure excellent agility and dynamic performance.
The new BMW X5 is the only vehicle in its segment available with both Active Steering, developed by BMW, and AdaptiveDrive (a combination of Active Roll Stabilization and Electronic Damping Control). It is also the first SAV fitted with runflat tires as standard equipment. And all X5s include as standard equipment hill-descent control, dual-zone automatic climate control, BMW Assist and concierge service, vinyl upholstery, 10-way power front seats, driver-seat memory, rain-sensing wipers, and a power liftgate. The powerful elegance of the exterior design, just like the flexible and elegant interior, which combines sophisticated materials with numerous innovative options, clearly underlines the dynamic character of the new BMW X5.
There are plenty of competitors out there, amongst them are the Range Rover Sport, the Porsche Cayenne, the Infiniti FX, and the Mercedes-Benz M-Class because, like the X5, it offers a choice of gasoline, diesel, and ultra-high-performance variants.
The X5 has the following five trim levels of engines – xDrive 35i, xDrive35i Premium, xDrive35i Sport Activity, xDrive35d and xDrive50i- the xDrive indicating the engine version. All X5 models have the all wheel drive as a standard feature but with variations in the different engine versions. The xDrive 35i is powered by a 3.0 litre turbocharged inline-6 engine that produces 300 hp & 300 pound-feet of torque. Several tests have been conducted and confirmed that this SAV can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 6.4 seconds, not bad for a midsize luxury SUV/SAV. The 35i and 50i use an 8-speed automatic transmission while the M and 35d pair with a 6-speed automatic.
Which brings us now to this part… Once you sit, buckle up, get behind the wheel of this SAV, and move the joystick to the DRIVE setting, almost immediately you know you are behind the wheel of Freude am Fahren (‘Pleasure in driving’) – a BMW – no if, ands or buts… the feeling of weight and solidity to the entire vehicle is evident. The solid and robust steering is totally communicative and precise but many consumers and industry people think that is probably a turnoff to some buyers, who might prefer the light-and-easy movement of the Infiniti JX35. The powertrain performance is superb, with none of the off-the-line hesitation that has plagued some iterations of the 5- and 7-series sedans.
We had an entire week with this amazing vehicle with Oyster Nevada Leather interior and Deep Sea Blue Metallic for its body paint with an MSRP of $72,175.00 and after various different tests both on and off road, we were able to get approximately 14.9 mpg – The EPA rates the 2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i at 16 mpg city/23 mpg highway. The 50i scores 14 city/20 highway while the M rates 12/17. The xDrive35d is the most frugal, earning a 19 city/26 highway rating.
The all-new X5 has all the attributes that made the original Sports Activity Vehicle such an innovative concept, and elevates them to new standards. Since its inception, the German automaker has sold around 580,000 units worldwide, thus the X5 has become an outstanding global success and still enjoys great popularity to this day. Of course the U.S. is the market where the X5 has had the greatest impact. Nearly a quarter of a million units have been sold in the U.S. alone…
Maybe the 250,001 will be in your driveway soon! It will definitely put a constant smile on your face!